AN ACTOR'S DAUGHTER by Aline Bernstein


Email this review


Forget the undress version of her love affair, The Journey Down -- and take this on its own merits. The best parts of that book were her reminiscences of a childhood in theatre. Here that aspect of her life is given free rein -- the span which ended with the death of her father. Life in Aunt Mamie's boarding house, time on the road, years in London, then back in a New York of irresponsible, extravagant people, midnight suppers, gaslight, theatre glamor, high gaiety and some tragedy. Her father drank now and again; her mother, completely overshadowed, hovered over them all; but it is her aunt, Nana, who dominates the book, who weaves her spell as she did in life, luxurious, rebellious, restless, amoral, captivating Nana. Of her innumerable lovers, of the one she loved and lost, of the one who bled her, of the jealous, tormented husband in the background. Warm, nostalgic memoirs, enriched by the author's capacity to recapture the feel, rather than the facts of childhood tastes, smells, sounds. Nice -- within its own field.

Pub Date: Feb. 4th, 1940
Publisher: Knopf